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Classical Hindu ThoughtAn Introduction$
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Arvind Sharma

Print publication date: 2001

Print ISBN-13: 9780195658712

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195658712.001.0001

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(p.186) Chapter XXI Puruṣārthas
Classical Hindu Thought

Arvind Sharma

Oxford University Press

The word purusārtha in general means human endeavour; but, in the present context, it means the goals or ends sought through human endeavour. Classical Hindu thought essentially identifies four such goals: (1) dharma—righteous living or discharge of duties; (2) artha—acquisition of wealth; (3) kama—gratification of desires; and (4) moksha—attainment of spiritual liberation. This chapter discusses the gradual acceptance all the four purusārtha as the legitimate ends of human endeavour.

Keywords:   classical Hindu thought, Hinduism, dharma, artha, kama, moksha

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